Now 21 individual accusers have come forward alleging that Republican strategist and co-founder of the anti-Trump Lincoln Project organization, John Weaver, sent them sexually provocative messages, the New York Times reports.
The men, who were young a the time, say that Weaver sent them sexually charged messages within the context of him also saying he could find them a job in politics, according to interviews with the 21 accusers.
Weaver's alleged sexual solicitations included interacting with a 14-year-old boy, asking him questions about his body, then later sending more explicit messages when he turned 18, the Times reports.
Screenshots of messages from Weavers how that the solicitations were sometimes aggressive in nature, according to the Times.
None of the alleged solicitations from Weaver resulted in a physical sexual encounter except in one consensual case. The accusers say they felt preyed upon by an older man in power who offered to help their careers if they engaged with him.
Weaver allegedly told an one of the victims he would, "help you other times. Give advice, counsel, help with bills," if, "you help me … sensually."
Cole Trickle Miele was 14-years-old when he first received Twitter direct messages from Weaver. At first he said he did not see any red flags.
"I remember being a 14-year-old kid interested in politics and being semi-starstruck by John Weaver engaging in a conversation with me," said Miele, now 19.
When Miele turned 18, he says the messages went from odd inquiries about his body to more overtly sexual in tone.
"I want to come to Vegas and take you to dinner and drinks and spoil you!!," weaver allegedly messaged him.
“Hey my boy! resend me your stats! or I can guess! if that is easier or more fun!” another message read.
Cody Bralts was a recent college graduate looking for a job in politics when he first engaged with Weaver.
Bralts told Weaver in conversation over Twitter that he ran marathons.
To that Weaver responded, "At least I know that whatever we end up doing, you could do it multiple times in a row," with a winking emoji.
"It just seemed like he was exploiting his power," Mr. Bralts said.
"He was someone very important and high up in a field I want to go into," he continued.
Weaver's Lincoln Project colleagues said they had no knowledge of his solicitation to young men, and only found out about the alleged activities this month when an the American Conservative article and an open letter on Twitter first brought to light the allegations.
"There was no awareness or insinuations of any type of inappropriate behavior when we became aware of the chatter at the time." Mr. Weaver denied the claims, Mr. Schmidt said.
Earlier this month, Weaver acknowledging that he had sent inappropriate messages to "to the men I made uncomfortable," and issued an apology.